Happy 1st Anniversary!

Tomorrow I will be celebrating my first anniversary with my present company. It’s been an incredible year. As I look back at my first year in the IT industry, I want to answer the same questions that took me here in the first place. (I used this questionnaire to help me decide about leaving my former job and moving to my new company).

  1. Are you satisfied with your job at present in terms of the following:
  •  compensation? My career counselor also asked me this question when we had a one on one discussion and he was surprised when I said ‘Yes.’ He said there are only a few people that he knows who actually says that they are satisfied with their current compensation. Maybe because I am not expecting too much or maybe because I have been accustomed to the low salary rates of a university instructor or maybe it’s just because I know how to handle money. I am not so certain with my reason. But yes, I am satisfied with my compensation. I was able to pay my brother’s tuition on time, live comfortably, pay my bills, tithe, save, and invest.
  • career growth – does it help you improve your skills and increase your learning? Yes! My golly, I have learned so much about the IT industry in this one year. Also, from zero knowledge in some of the technologies that we are using, I am now about 30% knowledgeable. :p My JEE proficiency has also increased because of my exposure to a project. I am so glad that I am now able to apply the things that I have been reading and teaching to my students before. Although it pains me to realize that what we are teaching in school is just the tip of the iceberg. Or maybe just the tip of the tip of the iceberg. Haha. Aside from that, I was also able to explore/try out other things outside of work that I haven’t tried before such as: volunteering for Childhope Asia, joining Toastmasters Club, Yoga, Taebo and cooking class, Young Entrepreneur’s club, and other stuff that the company offers to its employees. I have been so active in joining these clubs/seminars/trainings/volunteer work before, when I was not yet deployed to a project.

2. Is your environment conducive to working? Yes. It’s good that the company provides for the needs of its employees and making sure that we are able to work comfortably.

3. Are you comfortable with the people you work with – your peers, teammates, management/staff? Yes. I am glad that so far, I have been working with nice, smart and fun people.

4. What are the things you want to change/improve? What are the challenges you’ve encountered in doing your job? Hmm…… if I am given the power to improve something in my present job, it would be the work hours. I do not believe in working for more than 40 hours per week. I believe that there’s more to life than work. Your work should not define you. You don’t live to work, you work to live. Unfortunately, they say that it’s normal for us in the IT industry to have erratic working hours. They say it’s inevitable. This, of all the challenges I’ve encountered in my job, is the hardest for me to accept. Especially because my longest job, the one I had for 6 years – as an IT instructor in Mindanao State University only required me to work for at most 8 hours in selected days  or a total of about 26 teaching hours per week. Plus I got to enjoy Christmas and summer vacations and sem breaks. Another challenge for me is being so new to the industry and yet a lot is expected of me because of my position. I had so much to learn and unlearn, I had to adjust with the corporate environment, and at the same time, lead the younger ones, who, like me, are also new to the company. And most of the time, they know a lot more than I do because they’ve been in the IT industry much longer.

In the next months or maybe years with the company or the IT industry, I want to be more daring, assertive, and proactive. I wish to take on roles or tasks that will help me maximize my full potential. I want to push myself to my limits, in terms of software engineering, system requirements and analysis,  Java skills and soft skills such as communicating with, and leading people. However, as I have said, I wish this would be possible even if I don’t have to extend my working hours. (I also have other plans with my life and other dreams I want to pursue).

5. Do you see yourself in the same job or company for the next 5 years? Maybe.